“Art Grider - Original Works of Art
(originally published October 25, 2006)
Local sax man Art Grider honks, wheezes and wails all over this, his cheekily-titled debut album, while an enlisted band of locals brings up the rear. Grider specializes in what could be referred to as extremely funky jazz fusion that calls upon the spirits of influential biggies like Stan Getz, John Coltrane and Ornette Coleman.
Grider's bellowing tenor sax is joined by guitarists Greg Clinton and Michael Westbrook, bassist Chris Enghauser, pianist Tracy Reynolds, organist Pat Strawser and drummer Chris Hood. The eclectic backing band - Hood is the drummer for Southern rap/ rock band Rehab, Reynolds is the music minister at Grace Emmanuel Baptist Church and Westbrook is a jazz studies major at Georgia State - suits Grider's style well from the slick fusion of "ZJAM" to the Strawser-penned exploration "Sea of Dreams."
Grider, also familiar as a longtime UGA biochem professor, has been making music for some time, mostly with church bands and occasional sit-ins with local groups. Original Works of Art shows the man also knows his abstract jazz and tightly-wound funk like big carbon knows the two little oxygens, gloriously extended notes and all.
- Michael Andrews